(Start with "Monday" if you can. I've put together a very structured fool-proof 100% guaranteed or your money back crash course on dealing with Thanksgiving. If you skip around, however, it won't work and I don't give refunds. It's in the fine print of your contract.) So what were we talking about? Oh right. Relatives. Kind of says it all, doesn't it?
Just like years ago when my mother told my father that she'd just as soon not go to some big family shindig that his cousin was throwing. Dad asked: "You don't want to go? Why not?" To which Mom responded simply: "Because they're ridiculous people."
One great option to making it through Thanksgiving, any holiday really, is avoidance. If you avoid the ridiculous celebration, you avoid the ridiculous relatives and the ridiculous things that come out of their mouths. (I'm starting a new show called: "Relatives Say the Most Ridiculous Things!!")
To attend or not to attend...that is the question...
I assume that many people who read my blog are indeed not hosting big Thanksgiving feasts this year. I may be off (mentally there's no question), but I arrived at this conclusion very scientifically...
Right now you're a small family (maybe just two of you) and you're fairly young. "The relatives" are either larger groups of people or they're ancient. Either way you're more mobile. So you're probably going to their house instead of the other way around.
It's like when I got married. We had family in NY and Florida. The average age of the New York clan was 34. Of those in Florida: 109. So obviouly it was easier for us to pick ourselves up and go down there.
(People get all interested in their genealogy. Mine is easy to trace. My ancestors were at my wedding:
"Do you know what town in Russia your great, great, uncle Melvin came from?"
"I have no idea. Why don't you ask him? He's the one in the powder blue sports jacket heading to the buffet.")
And to me, a person who doesn't believe in avoiding life's problems I say, when dealing with family holiday events and infertility at the same time: Run! Run Forrest Ruuuuuun!
You have no obligation to be anywhere for any of these people. Your obligation is to yourself first and then, probably your spouse. And if you're supposed to bring the rolls to the wingding and at the last minute you think you can't deal with going... oh well.. And if your aunt calls and asks: "Where are my rolls?" Tell her to lift up her shirt and back up slowly toward the full length mirror.
Seriously, if you don't feel like you can go...even if everything's packed up and ready to go. Don't go. If you think everyone will be calling and pressuring you, and guilting you into going: First turn off your phone and then don't go. Forget about them.
Consider only this: Will you feel better or worse about yourself if you go? Will you be glad you dealt with it head on or will you be mad for subjecting yourself to it?
If you decide to attend and you have a partner, a man, a woman, a husband, a wife, or someone you can schlep along to pose as any one of the above: That is something to be thankful for.
I think being single at a family gathering was worse than being infertile. Everyone could see I was single.
In fact, I would be forgotten altogether and not be invited... or worse... I would get the after-thought invitation. You know. They would invite everybody two months in advance and about two days before Thanksgiving, they'd remember the stuffing and me at the same time. "Oh sht. I forgot to buy bread... and invite Lori."
So I'd either get no invite or I'd get a pity invite. That's why I advise this: If you don't want to be with the ridiculous branches of the family tree, fine. Just have a better plan. Something you'd rather be doing. Don't send yourself your own pity invite and cry yourself a river to float your gravy boat on.
Listen I gotta go. I'm going to be serving my mother's traditional cranberry sauce and I have to locate the can opener.
I'll talk with ya again tomorrow.